Six Reasons to Add Fish to Your Diet

Fish

2013 was not the best year for fish in the news, however, a large-scale study conducted in December found that a fish-rich diet has a variety of health benefits including improved cognitive function and increased amounts of energy. Read the six compelling reasons below to add a dose of fatty fish to your regular diet.

Your Eyesight

Researchers found in a large-scale study that eating a diet high in omega-3 fatty acids was strongly connected to a reduced risk of macular degeneration caused by aging.

Your Heart

Heart disease is the main cause of death among American adults, but including enough fatty fish in your diet may help reduce your risk of dying from the disease. Several observational and controlled studies from the Harvard School of Public Health found that eating fatty fish once or twice a week reduced a person’s risk of cardiac death by 36 percent. Not to mention it reduced the chance of death by any cause by 17 percent.

The American Heart Association also stated that although several types of fish have small amounts of toxicants, the potential danger is outweighed by the health benefits of the fish’s nutrient density.

Your Brain

If you have to give an important presentation or have to take an exam soon, you might want to dine on some fatty fish before the big day. Researchers gave fish oil-derived omega-3 supplements to a group of men and women between the ages of 18 and 25 and then conducted memory tests several times over the course of six months. As the group continued taking the supplements, their test accuracy steadily improved. The researchers also found evidence that a lack of omega-3 fatty acids can lower stores of dopamine, which is linked to memory.

Your Joints

For women, just one serving of fatty fish, or four servings of lean fish, can greatly reduce the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis. Instead of having to endure the chronic pain of swollen, inflamed, and aching joints, choose a fatty fish for dinner just once a week. Researchers found that women who consumed a weekly serving of fatty fish, or the four lean servings, were 52 percent less likely to develop the chronic auto-immune disease than those who did not.

Your Skin

One substance in fish oil, known as EPA, has many skin benefits. Eating fatty fish can improve your skin’s ability to regulate oil production and stay hydrated. There is also some evidence that eating fatty fish can help protect skin cells from free radical damage caused by the sun. Some benefits include helping preserve the skin’s natural collagen, which can prevent premature wrinkling and sagging.

Your Breathing

According to a Dutch study, eating fish during early childhood for a specific period of time may be a healthy way to stave off asthma. The researchers discovered that between the ages of six and twelve months, children had a 36 percent reduced risk of wheezing by age 4, compared to children who ate fish after 1 year of age or before 6 months. While the study is compelling, it requires more research of the anti-inflammatory benefits form fish fats. Make sure to consult your pediatrician before adding fatty fish to your child’s diet.

 

Make sure to consult your primary care physician or chiropractor for all health related advice.

Story Credit

Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Felex Liu

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